Behavioral medicine focuses on how thoughts and behavior impact health and disease. It is designed to help a patient talk through their pain experience, identifying negative thoughts behaviors that might be contributing to their condition, and develop skills or coping mechanisms to help provide pain relief.
Behavioral Medicine Includes
- Psychological testing can assess strengths and problem areas that can impact pain. For example, depression and anxiety are common issues that complicate pain management.
- Neuropsychological testing is a specialized assessment of brain function and dysfunction. These tests can assess how well the brain is working and guide treatment for personal, education or vocational needs. These tests can also be used to document changes over time and focus on key areas such as memory.
- Individual therapy can address issues such as depression or anxiety and also address skills for coping with pain and the emotional and social consequences of pain.
- Group therapy is available and allows individuals to share and discuss coping strategies with others who are dealing with similar problems.
- Biofeedback is the process of gaining greater awareness of many physiological functions primarily using instruments that provide information on the activity of those same systems, with a goal of being able to manipulate them at will. Some of the processes that can be controlled include brainwaves, muscle tone, skin conductance, heart rate and pain perception.
- Family therapy is available to help spouses and others understand and cope with chronic pain issues. Our therapists are also trained in substance abuse, vocational, and disability counseling, issues that commonly co-exist with chronic medical conditions. Whether dealing with stress management, grief counseling or other quality of life concerns, behavioral medicine can assist in minimizing the impact of chronic pain.
If you want to know more about Behavioral Medicine ask your Pain Specialist if Behavioral Medicine can help with your pain treatment program.